By Alexis R. Milan, Staff Reporter
The Belize Jaguars football team returned home on Saturday morning following a disappointing 3-0 loss to Canada’s national team on Friday night and are now preparing for Tuesday’s second game against the Canadians.
In the first half of the game, Canada controlled the ball and the tempo, leaving the Jaguars to defend for the majority of that half. Canada headed into half-time with a 1-0 lead, having scored in the 25th minute of play.
Shortly after the second half began the Canadian scored again in the 64th minute of play, going up to 2-0 against the Jaguars. Both goal were scored by Tosaint Ricketts.
Later in the second half the Jaguars attacked on several occasions, getting into the Canadian box a few times but not creating any real opportunities for star striker Deon McCaulay or any other Jaguar to score.
In the closing seconds of play, in the 90th minute, Canadian Atiba Hutchinson scored off a corner kick, pushing their lead to a disappointing 3-0 score. This came after a brilliant block by Belize’s goalkeeper, Woodrow West.
The return match will be played at the Football Federation of Belize (FFB) Stadium in Belmopan on Tuesday, where the Jaguars will need to win by a margin of four (4) goals to advance into the next round of the World Cup Qualifiers.
Some have predicted that the Jaguars stand a better chance on home turf as the Canadians may not be as quick as they were on Friday in the Belizean humidity. The Canadians perhaps wary of this, also arrived in Belize on Saturday to prepare for Tuesday’s game.